Top Stories for 10/1

October 01, 2021 HIMSS Media
Top Stories for 10/1
Show Notes Transcript

Walmart to begin rolling out Epic platform in its healthcare centers; 73% of metropolitan areas are controlled by large health insurers . Plus: Amazon adds to its fitness tracking line with Halo View.

Links to the stories:

Walmart Health announces partnership with Epic

AMA: Nearly three-quarters of metropolitan areas are concentrated health insurance markets

New Amazon Halo device and features compete against Fitbit, Apple Fitness+

A retail giant is teaming up with an electronic health record vendor. What does this mean for healthcare? I’m Jeff Lagasse with Healthcare Finance News, and we’ll look for answers to that and more in this week’s Top Stories.

 Major retail player Walmart has announced that it will begin using Epic's EHR in its healthcare centers, starting in Florida in early 2022. According to HealthcareITNews (https://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/walmart-health-announces-partnership-epic), all of Walmart's health and wellness lines of business will eventually be supported by the Epic platform as it's rolled out. Walmart has been slowly opening health centers designed to deliver primary and urgent care, labs, X-ray and diagnostics, counseling, dental, optical and hearing services. Epic, meanwhile, said its vaccine credential technology is now available to 25 million individuals through their MyChart account.

 About 73% of metropolitan statistical areas in the U.S. are concentrated health insurance markets, meaning large health insurers control the market in nearly three-quarters of the country, finds new analysis from the American Medical Association. As we see in Healthcare Finance News (https://www.healthcarefinancenews.com/news/ama-nearly-three-quarters-metropolitan-areas-are-concentrated-health-insurance-markets), most health insurance markets in the U.S. are highly concentrated, which the AMA said leaves millions of Americans with more limited health insurer options. Of the 384 MSAs examined, 280 were classified as highly concentrated, according to federal guidelines. Almost 180, or 46%, of the MSA-level markets had one insurer with a share of 50% or more. 

 Finally this week, Amazon is adding to its Halo fitness-tracking line with a new wearable, the Halo View, plus workout classes to rival Apple Fitness+ and meal planning. MobiHealthNews reports (https://www.mobihealthnews.com/news/new-amazon-halo-device-and-features-compete-against-fitbit-apple-fitness) that the Halo View allows wearers to track health metrics like activity, sleep quality and blood oxygen levels. It provides live workout tracking as well as movement reminders and text messages. Unlike its original Halo wearable launched last year, the device includes an AMOLED screen. Wearables are a big business. A report by the Consumer Technology Association predicts the market for wearables will generate a record-breaking $487 billion in revenue this year.

 I’m Jeff Lagasse with Healthcare Finance News, and this has been Top Stories.